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‘Local Community Rituals’ In Bhutan: Documentation And Tentative Reading

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Chapter Summary

This chapter presents a tentative reading of the local community rituals, based on the author's personal fieldwork as well as on those that have been documented so far including the Institute of Language and Culture Studies (ILCS) Rituals project. In Bhutan, all the local community rituals with their multiple religious identities present common characteristics that reflect a local identity and they continue to be territorial markers even in the modern context of Bhutan's nation building and administrative reorganisation. As such, they relate to rituals performed throughout the Himalayas and in the Tibetan culture as defined by Karmay. However, because of the socio-religious development specific to Bhutan, some of their modalities are particular. Recent studies and fieldwork have shown that all over the Himalayas and the Tibetan world, there is no ideal template for local community rituals, only common elements.

Keywords: Bhutan; Institute of Language and Culture Studies(ILCS); local community rituals; religious identities; Tantric Buddhism



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